Monday, October 18, 2010

The "morally impossible" victory of the right: AMLO or Juárez?

Another note on AMLO: During his "Loyalty Tour," the PRD's 2006 presidential candidate  argued that "the triumph of reaction, as Juárez said, is morally impossible."

Like AMLO, I am also an admirer of Benito Juárez, and while I admit I am hardly an expert on this great Mexican president, I have never found the actual context where Juárez is supposed to have uttered this statement, which AMLO has repeated often in the past. And given AMLO's denunciation of institutions and refusal to accept near any loss, it is frankly more than a bit worrisome: Is also the electoral victory of the right deemed to be an impossibility?  That is, will AMLO reject say a PAN-PRD victory in 2011 using the same argument, that it is simply "morally impossible"?

Marcelo Ebrard: "Today is the beginning of the end of priísta governments in Mexico State"

La Jornada's front page exaggerated the issue a bit - "López Obrador and Ebrard collide over the State of Mexico" - though the appearance of both the current and the former head of Mexico City, both of whom are seeking their party's nomination for the 2012 presidential race, was certainly noteworthy.

In the first major appearance in what can only be regarded as the unofficial launch of his presidential campaign, in the Plaza de los Mártires, Ebrard  make a clear call for a common front to defeat the PRI in the upcomign gubernatorial elections in the state, and especially to avoid two candidates of the left, one backed by the PRD, and the other by AMLO: "All that divides [the left] will work in favor of Enrique Peña Nieto, adn all that unifies is will work in favor of the people." While he didn't mention PAN or AMLO by name, the references were quite obvious. Reportedly more than 25,000 people came out for the mass rally, which was also attended by key perredistas such as senators Carlos Navarrete, Graco Ramírez, and Héctor Bautista, the latter a likely PRD candidate for the governorship. Ebrard declared that "Today is the beginning of the end of priísta governments in Mexico State," and promised a government that would implement the the highly popular, and successful, social programs of his Mexico City administration, such as stipends to young adults, children, single mothers, people with disabilities, and senior citizens.

Luis Sánchez, head of PRD in Mexico State and a backer of a Ebrard and a PAN-PRD alliance, also said that the PRD will tomorrow head to the Supreme Court to formally launch a complaint against the recently passed "Ley Peña," which directly seeks to block a PAN-PRD alliance by forcing parties to also present common legislative lists.

AMLO also held meetings, as part of his Gira de lealtad or "Loyalty Tour" to protest the PRD's decision to allow electoral alliances with parties such as PAN, and continued to accuse the party of which he is still nominally a member of having made secret agreements with President Felipe Calderón. According to AMLO, the left - PRD, PT, and Convergencia - can defeat the PRI on their own, as AMLO admittedly did in Mexico State in 2006, though he neglected to add that while 2006 was a presidential election, the year before, PRD's  2005 gubernatorial candidate, which AMLO had handpicked and campaigned heavily for,  came in a disappointing third.